Sunday, January 5, 2014

Witnesses at My Door

By Cynthia Hampton

(Originally written January 20, 2007 Christian ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses Yahoo Group)

I had not seen Jehovah's Witnesses in my neighborhood for the longest time.  Usually what I see are the ones from the Spanish speaking Kingdom Halls and they come to my door and just ask if I speak Spanish, which I really can't carry on a very good conversation in.  So they always go away, since their first language is Spanish, and mine is English.  So needless to say, I was quite surprised to get a knock on my door today and find some English speaking JWs!

They seemed to be a nice couple in their early to mid-30s or so.  They introduced themselves as Kim and Ken.  Anyway, when I opened the door to them, since I don't have a screen door, I invited them to come in. I told them I couldn't stand there with the door open since I had pet cats and didn't want them to escape outside.  So they came in. 

Ken presented the January 1st Watchtower and the January Awake magazines to me.  He talked about a time that there would be no sickness and death and asked me if I believed in that.  I replied, "Well of course, I believe in a time that there will be no sickness or death, I believe in the promises from the Bible that Jesus Christ gave to us, by the sacrifice of His own life.”

They looked at me with a surprised look and said, "Do you read the Bible?"  To which I replied, "Well, I've been reading the Bible a very long time and I believe in reading it chapter by chapter, verse by verse.”  Ken replied that the Watchtower magazine has scripture referenced so that one can understand the Bible completely without having to read the whole thing because the Bible is so hard to read.  I told him that I had no trouble reading the Bible and that I believed in reading it independently without the help of commentaries or other types of books.  I told him that I believed that it is very dangerous to read scripture out of context because you can get an incorrect meaning from just doing a "hodge-podge" of scripture. I told him that I was involved in a Bible study where I was going over the book of John with another lady who is a new Christian.  We just sit there and read the text and discuss what Jesus meant when he said various things about Himself.

I began referring to areas within the book of John concerning Jesus and every time He said "I am". I asked if they knew that there are 7 I AMs in the book of John. Of course they said no.  I mentioned how Jesus said "I am the bread of life." I asked them if they knew that Bethlehem means House of Bread.  (I knew that they didn't know that!)  I talked about how Jesus spoke with the Jews and how the Pharisees listened to him, ultimately becoming angry and accusing Jesus of having a demon. In fact, those Pharisees were trying to attribute the miracles of Jesus to Satan! I went on a little more concerning things that Jesus said and did while He was on Earth.

Notice how I was handling them.  I was getting them out of their own script so that I could speak and have my say without them replying to me with their canned answers from the Watchtower literature. I did not let them control the conversation. I talked to them about things they probably never really stopped to think about because it's not taught in their literature and at the Kingdom Hall. Not once did they try to stop me and try to tell me about “Jehovah’s Kingdom.”

It is very important if you decide to speak to JWs that you get them off the set path and script that they are on.  I did NOT discuss their doctrines with them, because they would have been back on the same old track. Instead, they were caught off guard and off track. This is a good way of getting them to think for themselves and not revert to their intended script.

They really didn't know what to say to me.  They said that they never meet people in their door to door work who know so much about the Bible.  I told them that because most people probably don't study the Bible the way my friends and I do.  My circle of friends are very well versed in the Bible and we read and discuss it frequently.  My husband had taught adult Sunday school for many years and so we discuss the Bible very frequently at home.

They asked what church I attended and I told them the name of my church.  Kim asked, "Is that church in Downey?" (town where I live)  And I told her yes, the church has Bible studies after their main Sunday service and during the week. They told me that they didn't know that churches had such Bible study. You should have seen the looks on their faces. The Watchtower teaches their followers that Christians are absolutely clueless so that was the reason for their surprise. Also, it is sad to say, but many Christians just refuse to talk with the Jehovah’s Witnesses at the door.

So then they asked me if I still wanted the magazines.  I said, "Well only if they are free.”  So they said, well yes, they are free, and so he handed them over.  I told them to come again if they are in the neighborhood. I never did see them again after that, but hopefully I gave them a lot to think about and perhaps someday they will be back.

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